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Television Show Extreme Makeover Builds Katrina Memorial in Biloxi
by Keith Burton - GCN
Filed 2/12/06

The national television show Extreme Home Makeover Home Edition is building a Katrina memorial at the Biloxi Town Green along U.S. 90. The show has the help of the Roy Anderson Company that has built many of the casinos on the Coast as well as several other contractors. Makeover crews are also rebuilding the Coastal Family Health Center, a nonprofit clinic at the corner of Division and Elmer streets that was flooded during Katrina.

Construction began Saturday and workers are expected to complete the project within five days, or by mid week. Video work is already underway for the show.

The memorial will be a curving black marble structure with the names of those lost in the hurricane. The memorial will also honor the nation for its help following the hurricane (which is still badly needed).

By late Sunday afternoon, workers had cleared the land, constructed the main supporting wall of the memorial and were finishing a concrete sidewalk around the structure. Work crews are working around the clock to finish the memorial on time. Lights have been set up around the site for the work at night.

A formal ceremony will be held after the project is finished. Some people feel that a memorial when the Coast is still in such bad shape is premature and the official list of the lost has not been finalized. There are nearly 400 Mississippians still listed as missing in Harrison County. In Harrison and Hancock counties, the coroner reports 143 deaths from Katrina.

The show is planned for broadcast in March. What is clear is that the memorial replaces the Biloxi Cottage and welcome center that was destroyed by the hurricane, and was a landmark structure at the Town Green before Katrina.

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